Thursday, August 25, 2005

The Carpetbagger Report » Got oil?

The Carpetbagger Report » Blog Archive » Running on Empty: "Here’s another dark cloud that’s no longer out on the horizon, but just a few miles away, close enough to smell the rain and both hear and see the lightning simultaneously, as the first stinging droplets hit your face in the rising wind."

The thing about Peak Oil is neither that oil will become and stay astronomically expensive any time soon -- it won't -- nor that we will "run out" any time soon, either -- we won't. What will happen -- or rather has happened, is that worldwide growth in oil consumption is constricted to production capacity, and production capacity is near its all-time peak. "All-time peak" means not just a world record, so to speak, but as high as it will ever be in all the millenia of earth's continued existence. As in, ain't going higher than it will be in roughly 2010.

The immediate consequence is that oil supply has become an order of magnitude more fragile and risky, than in the past. Occasional spikes in oil prices are likely to be a feature of the next few years, at least until governments and oil companies work out a system of reserves.

So, yes, an oil price spike is likely to be an element of the Coming Perfect Storm.

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